wandering around a national trust property at 4:46pm

close up photo of assorted books
Photo by Leah Kelley on Pexels.com

The house is cold, it’s always icy, even in the midst of summer

When the world is stripping layers, craving ice creams

And we are trailing through the gaping halls and marble steps

With wrought iron rails that once were touched by kings and queens

And now they’re gripped by older ladies and their grandchildren,

Neither seeing what the other does, but then we all take from the world

Exactly what we want. Some will see the history layered,

Like wallpaper, one sheet on top of the other, peeling in the corners,

Showing just what needs to be shown. And some will see the art,

While others long to run down tended lawns, screaming with joy

And tumbling as our mothers yell, worrying needlessly

About the grass stains that will cover our knees.

But at 4:46pm, when volunteers are looking at their watches

And thinking about that well earned cup of tea, I gaze

From a window where an Austen adaptation filmed,

Something grand with Colin Firth, that made the women swoon.

I’d like pretend for just a few more precious hours,

That I’m an Austen lady, Miss Bingley or Miss Bennet,

Either, I don’t care, as long as I can cling to that ideal

That love is real, and men out there will offer up

The magic this house saw, in days so distant from such times as these.